Drive Electric Earth Month

Drive Electric Earth Month
Drive Electric - On a Budget - For Earth Day
Ithaca, NY
Apr 23, 2022

Day: Saturday, April 23, 2022 NOTE: this event has already happened, find current-year events on the Attend page.
Time: 10:00 am - 1:00 pm EDT
Location: Cass Park Skating Rink lot
701 Taughannock Blvd
Ithaca, NY 14850
Contact the event organizers, which took place in 2022.

Event Report

With generous support from Electrify America and Plugin America, Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE Tompkins) led an Earth Day event focused on showing a range of the most affordable electric vehicles for Earth Day 2022. Ahead of our event, CCE Tompkins event organizer wrote an in-depth article published in the free newspaper with widest county circulation of 100,000 residents (Tompkins Weekly) on the possibilities of making a smooth transition to EVs (circulated through newspaper stands, mailed, and online). She also placed ads and PSAs on multiple radio stations, FaceBook groups and pages, google group and listserv postings, targeted emails to low and middle income households. Tompkins County has many rural households who are legendarily hard to reach, so we used a variety of strategies including flyers appealing to this audience, wherever possible featuring Plugin America and Electrify America logos. On the day of the event, we placed sandwich boards (Drive Electric, with logos) at nearby youth sports games encouraging families to come check out the EVs!    

CCE Tompkins partnered with Energetics (who brought charging stations), TCAT (who brought an electric bus), Ithaca CarShare (who brought two EVs), BikeWalk Tompkins (who brought an e-bike), Maguire Auto Dealership (who brought two used EVs), Ridge Road Auto, and a wonderful range of EV owners, leasers and volunteer drivers who drove in to show off their lowest-cost EVs (15 EV cars, 2 e-bikes, an e-scooter, plus TCAT’s electric bus. The lineup of EV cars included Chevy Volts, Chevy Bolts, Nissan Leafs, VW e-Golf, Hyundai Ionique 5,  Hyundai Kona, Prius Prime, and a RAV4 Prime. Conversations centered on EV experiences and attendee questions, including many about charging and range, and some about the average savings after purchasing an EV (averaging 60% less on fuel, 50% less on maintenance for BEVs).

Despite a cold, grey beginning to the show, chilly with sun and clouds, we had a very good turnout and superb engagement.  Most importantly, conversations with attendees were animated, full of interesting EV anecdotes, featuring active learning from everyone involved. We debriefed at the end of the show and without exception, participants spoke positively of their experiences, and felt energized by transitioning to EVs.

Leading up to the event, an ICTV film crew interviewed Holly Payne, CCE event organizer, and then participated in the event, interviewing Ithaca's Mayor Laura Lewis, Patty Poist, TCAT Marketing Manager; Margaret Johnson, BikeWalk Tompkins Director. The Mayor of Ithaca came to celebrate EVs and link the event to the City's commitment to reducing 50% of City emissions by 2025 - in part by phasing out gas cars from their fleets and switching to electric vehicles. The Mayor is committed to ensuring that the benefits of any work on climate issues are shared among all of our local communities to reduce historical, social and economic inequities. ICTV is creating a special feature on the transition to electric vehicles in our county - featuring our event - which will soon be aired.

A surprise keeps popping up: at this event, a person in a wheelchair arrived as did another handicapped EV car owner who showed off the ease of loading and unloading his walker through the hatchback of his Chevy Bolt. The wheelchair participant joined in the lineup tying a balloon to her "EV" electric wheelchair in solidarity (electric and festive!). She had come to the event to check the dimensions of several EV car models and see whether her wheelchair fit, and also to try strapping her wheelchair into TCAT’s electric bus. Mobility is not usually featured in EV events but it keeps being an essential feature since wheels are vital when you are struggling to walk. If household budgets allow you to purchase one, driving an EV could foster a sense of liberty, pride, and environmental contribution - and great fuel and maintenance savings. Other EVents may also want to consider mobility as part of their lineup - it was genuinely fun to feel the power of electric vehicles extend to everyone!

photo by: Holly Payne
Showing off most affordable EVs for Earth Day 2022 in Ithaca, NY

Event Description


FREE! Come see All-Electric EVs, Plug-in Hybrid EVs, electric vans, e-bikes, possibly a zero motorcycle.
The show is geared to the most affordable EVs (with a couple of high end models thrown in as well).

Pop the hoods; Ask questions to EV owners, leasers, drivers, e-bikers;
Check out the charging demo and tabling info; Find out how EV's reduce climate change
 - and how anyone can drive one - and how they're here to stay.

Register here to show your EV!
Masks are required inside the cars.

Questions? Contact Holly Payne
at [email protected]

Registered Attendees

There are currently 13 attendees registered.

Owners of These Vehicles Have Registered To Attend

Vehicle Registered
Chevrolet Bolt 1
Ford C-MAX Energi 1
Ford Mustang Mach-E 1
Tesla Model Y 1
Zero Motorcycle 1
5 Models 5

Registered attendees report 40,200 electric miles driven.

In the News…

Presented By

Plugin America logo
Electric Vehicle Association logo
Sierra Club logo
EVHybridNoire logo
Drive Electric USA logo

Gold Level Sponsor

Silver Level Sponsor

Bronze Level Sponsor

All DEEM 2025 sponsors support Plug In America's coordination of Drive Electric Earth Month.

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